Thursday, October 11, 2012

Fiction Workshop Writer's reading

I didn't get as much done as I would have hoped on the Workshop story as I would have liked this last week, but I did have the privilege of having everyone in the Workshop edit the new stuff for me. That was very nice. We are going to give a reading of our works in progress next Tuesday. This should be interesting. When I was thinking about what I wanted to do for this thing, I tried to hit all the high points of short story writing. Well, all the ones I know about. I think we talked about most of them. We talked all the reasons to write short fiction, we talked about some of the approaches we can use to tell a story, point of view, character--even a little bit about plot. Then we talked about editing, and even a bit about publishing.

The very bottom of my list of things to talk about was readings. Everybody knows that in order to sell your words, occasionally, you have to read them in public. I think most writers have a love-hate relationship with preforming. On paper, sitting in the booth at your diner with your headphones in? Yeah, sure, that's the best. For me, that's when the writing sounds exactly how I want it to. In my head, each character has her own voice, and even the right soundtrack behind them.

Now, standing in front of group of people, with my story in my hand? That's completely different. I can't shake the feeling that I'm going to fail the story because I know I can't make it sound like it does in my head-like it does when people read in for themselves. I know it's just going to be me, standing in front of a bunch of people, and who wants to see that?

So why did I insist on the reading at the end of the Workshop? Because I know that it's important. As important as posting a blog each week, or advertising your latest publications on Facebook. Maybe even more. It's important to read your words to people, to build you audience. And, like everything, it's important to start where you're starting. So, if you're so inclined, come and give us a listen, okay?


  1. Wish I could be there.

  2. I wish you could have too. But I wore those earrings you gave me all those years ago--you know the ones. For luck. And they worked.